Pen Names: Do you use one and what is the story behind yours?

So as the topic says do you use a pen name and if you do what is the story behind the name?

I write under the pen name Sam Kabell; the story behind it is I’ve taken the name of my first born son Sam, who sadly was still born back on 6th February 2011. I then took a letter from my dad’s name “K” my mom’s name “A” and then added the first four letters of my actual surname “bell”

So that is the origin of my pen name, what about you?


Not sure if it counts… but my forum username it’s the Italian translation of one character’s codename in one of my projects.
For any who wants to know, it means “renegade”


Kurozora Konoi is the name of a demon wolf that’s been in my dreams since I was 3 years old - which is as far as my memories go.
While I’m not her in the most literal sense, I sense through her senses and feel through her feelings in these dreams. They are very vivid and I feel and sense everything she feels and senses, like a passenger to her mind and heart.
So yeah, I allow myself to borrow her name.

Edit: and yup, she’s a yokai of sorts, even though I didn’t KNOW about japanese mythology back when I first “met” her. So yeah, the surname comes before the given name. I tend to use only Konoi on forums, but the full name when I create something.


Havenstone is an anglicization of my actual surname, which has helped me keep a little online distance between my writing and my day job.


I use Arlo Elm or A.E. Elm. Someone once told me Arlo fits my whole ~vibe~ and I kind of liked it. My real last name is also the name of a tree, and I thought Elm fit pretty well :slight_smile:


My pen name is my username.

My great-grandpa’s from a country where ‘Bodney’ was a common last name, so he changed it when he immigrated to the US. Ironically, he ended up changing it to something that’s now common in the US. So common, I decided it’d be too generic to use.

So, when I was coming up with my pen name I decided to include Bodney in it as a little joke.


Mine is rather mundane. “Daria” is my mother’s name (I never use my own online because it’s rather distinctive). The ‘RF’ is both a contraction of my country’s formal name and the initials of the street I live on.


My pen name is “Alex Zima.” It absolutely has a personal meaning with a story, but that’s for me to know for myself and for others to see as a pseudonym.


I’ve borrowed from a certain Russian literary tradition and taken Sviyagin (Svee-yah-ginn, syllables rhyme with bee-la-fin) as a surname. Anna is a shortened form of my real name that I sometimes use irl. I added “the great” to make my tumblr url as a kind of reference to Ivan the Terrible (“the terrible” is not a very good translation of the Russian) because I thought it was funny


I like the adapted Bilibin illustration. :heart:


I write under the pen name Snake Snow. Snake is the name of one of the characters in my unpublished short story. Snow, because I was born in winter. So that’s the story.


Thank you! They’re actually photo cutouts на рынке “Вернисаж в Измайлово”


My username is my pen name and my public online alias, basically. I prefer to separate my personal privacy that way.

Edelclere is a portmanteau of two words: Edelgard and Hauteclere.

Edelgard is the name of one of my favourite characters from the Fire Emblem franchise. My profile picture is a drawing of her that I had commissioned on her birthday this year.

Hauteclere is the name of a pretty sweet axe from the Fire Emblem franchise. It belongs to a character named Minerva, who is also in my list of favourite Fire Emblem characters.

Both Edelgard and Minerva are canonically axe-wielding characters. Maybe I just have a thing for girls with axes…


I am still trying to figure out what I want mine to be.

I definitely won’t write under my current legal name, since I might want to change that to something less gendered someday, anyway, and I also want to keep that distance between my private life, and all the stuff I create.

EDIT: I’m also considering changing my username, since it kinda invites people to misgender me :sweat_smile:


My username has a little accident attached to it,when I was 14 years old I started to learn driving my father’s triumph.

Long story short :-

A 14 year old kid cruising on highway on his father’s bike,
Sudden pickup truck from left side of road,
bike skidding,
right leg caught between road and hot engine of bike.

My legs burnt and I had fractures,I was on bed rest for 2 months and took therapy.

I thank my mother everyday because when I was going to drive that day,she forced me into wearing a helmet and that helmet saved my life.

It was 8 years ago,now my legs are fine although the scars are still there.

So,I just like dragons because we both kinda born out of fire because that day changed my life,I become much more cautious and started to drive bike safely (yea,I still drive bikes).

Moral of the story:- Don’t teach your kids how to drive bike until they are 18.


I’m also in the process of finding a pen name that really fits. As of right now, I’m going with my current username, which is…uh, not a direct English translation of my real name? lol But it’s certainly a more flower-y interpretation of it!

I like it so far, it’s similar enough to my real name that I don’t feel weird about it, and it evokes some nice imagery and has a good mouthfeel to it, but I’m just not…at home with it yet? If that makes sense? It could just be that I simply need to take the plunge and publish something with this pen name, but I always have some lingering doubt about any pen name I’ve ever tentatively chosen.

Which admittedly has only been two and a half-ish, but still, to have that doubt for each one is frustrating!


for my username, the yb part of it was an old username i used back then. it was yoongle_boongles. i was an army (bts fan) back then but after a while, i wanted to diverse my username to something more general and also because my classmates kept pronouncing it wrong and it pissed me off so much. after trying to come up with something for a few weeks, i suddenly came up with yb_minhee. the only reason it stuck is because i found it funny cause it sounded like “why be minhee”

next is minhee min. my oc and usually preferred name to use. minhee came from a game i was playing, i was using the random option and it came up so yeah. min is from my favorite bts member “min yoongi” and it kinda just stuck. i used to write stories of my oc being his brother haha

another more recent one is damien morax. morax came from genshin impact and was just a temporary last name but kinda fitted the badass feel the name damien had so i just went with it

well, that’s it haha. nothing really interesting


Everybody has such interesting stories for their pen names, I just wanted to sound fancy and French.


I don’t got a pen name, but my username came from a conversation that I had with my friends once at lunch. Basically we were discussing our possible stripper names. Because I was constantly chewing gum to stave off sleeping in class, I got WildMint. Everyone somehow ended up with food related stripper names, and we agreed that if in the future we were all still friends we’d open a strip club called the Buffet.

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Wow, mine must be the most simplest and boring one, haha.
Paradox because, my character traits and attitude in life has often been “paradoxical” and most people in my life agree with this conclusion and so do I. Also, it was my first username in any form of online medium, be it a game/forum/etc. And it holds a tinge of nostalgia for me cause of that reason.
Neel, is my irl pet name. I’m from India, so it’s like a conglomerate of cultures and regional dialects here. In my regional dialect, ‘neel’ means ‘blue’ cause when I was born my skin had a bluish tinge to it. Lol